Mamma Mia, Here He Goes Again: Visual and Performing Arts Chair Lawrence Long Shines at Hillbarn Theatre
Mamma Mia, Here He Goes Again: Visual and Performing Arts Chair Lawrence Long Shines at Hillbarn Theatre

It's hard not to get up and dance while watching the Hillbarn's rendition of Mamma Mia, and it's no surprise that most people in the audience actually do at the end of the show.

Abba fans will have flashbacks of the 1970s. From "Dancing Queen" and "Waterloo" to "Does Your Mother Know" and "Voulez-Vous," the incredibly talented actors electrify the stage.

Serra Visual and Performing Arts Chair Lawrence Long gives an outstanding performance as Bill, and he has a powerful singing voice to boot. Long said his role has been a lot of fun, and it has been especially wonderful to work with Hillbarn Theatre Artistic Director Dan Demers '01. We asked Long to share his experience with the Serra community in the following Q&A:

Q: What was it like to play the role of Bill? What was your vision?
A: I've had so much fun playing Bill. He actually isn't on stage very much, so the challenging part was giving him a realistic, interesting emotional arc without much time to do it.

Q: We hear there are some Tri-School Productions connections . . .
A: There are three Tri-School Productions alumni in the cast and crew–Serra alumnus Dan Demers, NDB alumna Jacquie McCarley and Mercy alumnus Catherine Traceski. It's great to see our alumni continuing working and finding joy in the theatre. An opportunity for current students to see them in action is always a rare treat!

Q: What was it like to work with Serra Padre Dan Demers?
A: Dan is very easy to work with. He knows exactly what he wants but trusts us to get there. He lets us bring a lot to the work, and makes us want to take the journey with him. This show for Dan is all about heart and fun. He has done so much to get us to where we are.

Q: What was your favorite song to sing and why?
A: My favorite song is "Take a Chance on Me." The song is a total give and take with Rosie (Jacquie McCarley), and it's the point where Bill makes a life-changing realization that puts him on a good path. Acting with Jacquie is a blast–she is so easy to work with and makes everything fun.

Q: How did the cast bond this time?
A: The show is easy to like. We knew from the start that the more fun the cast was having onstage, the more fun the audience would have with us. This is my first show since I moved back to Northern California from Los Angeles. Community theatre should feel like this–theatre put on by the community, for the community. It feels like a family backstage and I couldn't be happier!

Mamma Mia runs through this weekend, but the show has sold out! CLICK HERE for the 2019-2020 lineup.